Stay Safe Online
If you are feeling worried or uncomfortable about something that's happened on a phone or online, you should tell an adult at home about it. You can also let the school know by clicking on the following link:
Why is it important to stay safe online?
The potential for the internet to be a valuable and fun resource for entertainment, making friends and learning is huge, but if you use the internet, you could be at risk - be it bullying, fraud or something more serious. Unlike seeing someone face to face, on the net, people aren't always what they first seem.
In the same way you learn about safety when you leave the house, it is important to learn how to stay safe online. These are skills that will stay with you for life.
This is a wonderful resource for keeping safe online. Parent Info
An important update about SnapChat
Introducing ‘Snap Maps’ - the new location sharing feature in Snapchat
Today Snapchat introduced a new feature, the ‘Snap Map’.
This location based map allows users to see where in the country their Snapchat contacts are, as well as seeing location based photos and videos. The Snap Map shows a user’s Bitmoji, their cartoon avatar within Snapchat, pinpointed on a world map. Users can then zoom into the map to see the exact location of their friends.
How to access Snap Maps
To access the Snap Map in the latest update of the Snapchat app, users need to go to their camera screen within Snapchat and zoom out using two fingers. This will then launch the Snap Maps screen and will allow a user to see their friend’s locations.
Choose who can see your location
It is important to be careful about who you share your location with, as it can allow people to build up a picture of where you live, go to school and spend your time.
Given how specific this new feature is on Snapchat - giving your location to a precise pinpoint on a map - we would encourage users not to share their location, especially with people they don’t know in person.
There are three settings for sharing your location on the map, these are; Ghost mode, My Friends, and Select Friends. But what do these settings mean?
- Ghost Mode
- Ghost Mode means that you are the only person who can see your location on the map.
- Within Ghost Mode you can still see the locations of your friends but they will be unable to see you. This setting will ensure that you have complete control over who knows your location.
- My Friends
- My Friends means that all of your contacts on Snapchat can see your location. If turning on this setting then it would be important for users to review their Snapchat contacts and also make sure that they never add someone they don’t know in person onto Snapchat.
- Select Friends
- This setting allows users to look through their friend list and then decide which of their friends they want to be able to view their location. This setting gives users the opportunity to control who can view their location.
When first opening the Snap Map users get to make a decision of who they want to be able to view their location. Once these settings are in place they can always be changed in Snapchat’s settings. This can be done in two ways:
- In the Snapchat settings
- In the Snapchat screen click on the Settings (cog) icon> click on ‘see my location’ > Choose the setting which suits you
- On the Snap Map
- Click on the setting button in the top right of the map > choose the setting which suits you
Our top tips
Sharing location can be a risky thing to do. Our tips for location sharing are:
- Only share your location with people you know in person. Never share your location with strangers.
- Don’t add contacts to Snapchat if you don’t know them in person.
- Regularly review your settings and take an active decision about whether you want people to know your location. Remember you can switch this off at any time. Think about where you’re sharing your location. Location services such as Snap Maps can lead people to your house. Think about what times you’re on the app and whether these are locations you want to share – if not, then turn this off within your settings.
For more information about Snap Maps visit: https://support.snapchat.com/en-US/article/about-snap-map2
For more information about the other latest features on Snapchat read our latest blogs:
This blog has been featured in:
- The Guardian: Snapchat's new map feature raises fears of stalking and bullying
- The Financial Express: Snapchat’s new Snap Map feature raises privacy concerns
- OK! Magazine: Snapchat has a new feature which lets your track your the location of family and friends has sparked 'safety' concerns
- The Sun: Snapchat’s new Snap Maps feature lets you trace people’s locations sparking stalking and bullying fears
- International Business Time (USA): How To Disable Snap Map: New Snapchat Feature Raises Privacy Concerns
- ABC News (USA): Snapchat's new Snap Map feature raises privacy concern
Some Golden Rules
- Don't give out personal information such as your address or phone number.
- Don't open emails or attachments from people you don't know.
- Don't become online ‘friends’ with people you don't know.
- Never arrange to meet someone in person who you've met online.
- If anything you see or read online worries you, tell someone about it.
Tips so you stay safe on social networking sites
- Make sure you're old enough to join.
- Maybe use a made up name or nickname on your profile.
- Never give out personal information.
- Do not make friends you don't already know personally.
- Maybe use an email address that does not include your name.
- Always use a ‘strong’ password. That is, don't use any names or words that someone might guess, like the name of your dog or your favourite singer. Use random letters or numbers and change your password regularly.
- Use the strongest privacy setting when you set up your profile. This means that only your friends will be able to view your information.
- Pictures and videos can be shared very easily across the internet, so make sure you are very careful when uploading - even if you only share it with friends, it can easily be spread much further than that.
- Be very careful about sharing content online - especially if it isn't yours to share. Illegal downloads are definitely best avoided.
- Never meet up with anyone you have met online.
- Make sure you know about the safety features on any networking site. Some, for example, have a ‘panic button’ which you can press if you see something that shouldn't be there.
- If anything happens online that you don't like, tell someone.
The internet offers you a lot of freedom and this can lead some people to behave in ways they would not behave in public.
- say things in a chat room they would never say face to face
- give out personal information about themselves or others that they would normally keep private
Cyber bullying can work in the same way as bullying in the playground; the victim feels frightened and alone, while the bully tries to hide from being caught.
- Comments, images and videos about a person can be posted online causing the victim to feel frightened and upset.
- It is even possible for cyber bullies to hack into the victim's personal accounts and harass them from within their own user profile.
- Often cyber bullies feel braver because they can't be seen, but it can be the most traceable form of bullying because there's evidence that it's happened.
- But because bullies think they can cover up their identity online sometimes people who wouldn't normally bully might do so online.
The more information you make available online, the greater the risk of identity theft. It can be very tempting to post information about yourself on social networking sites, but you should never do it.
Personal information includes your:
- email address
- phone number
- postal address
- any banking information
E-mails, Spam & Viruses
If you have an e-mail address, at some point you might receive a message from someone you don't know. They could be:
- selling something (this is called a ‘spam’ email)
- sending you a virus
- sending you an attachment
- sending abusive or explicit content
The golden rule is, if the email is from someone you don't know, delete it.
- If it is spam, you might get ripped off.
- If it is a virus, your computer might get damaged.
- If it is an attachment, it might contain a virus, or it might be something you don't want to see.
- If it is abusive or explicit, it might upset you or even get you into trouble.
Remember, if in doubt, tell/ask an adult!
Check out these websites for further advice.
Parents and carers, please have a look at these documents: